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 Post subject: GMAT Symbols
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 7:10 am 
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Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2009 6:56 pm
Posts: 32
Let #X be defined as X^2 + 4 for all values X. If #P = #(P + 3), what is the value of P ?

Could you please explain, how the # function is working. Since I am educated
in a non-american jurisdiction, I've never encountered such a function.
Thanks in advance


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 Post subject: Re: Test 1, question 18
PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 7:17 am 
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Joined: Mon Apr 06, 2009 5:44 pm
Posts: 81
You are probably familiar with the f(x) notation for a function. Essentially, a function is a machine where you substitute values in for the variable, x, and the machine delivers some value. Of course, the formal definition is a bit more complex than the latter, but for GMAT purposes, this is enough.

Lets look at the problem #x can be taken to be f(x) = x² + 4. So that means #p = p(x) = p² + 4
and #(p + 3) = (p + 3)² + 4. Now, lets set the last two equal to each other:

#p = #(p + 3) =>

p² + 4 = (p + 3)² + 4
p² + 4 = (p² + 6p + 9) + 4
p² + 4 = p² + 6p + 13
6p = -9
p = -3/2


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